According to reports, Vole has agreed to develop tools that enable conversion between its Open XML formats in Office 2007 and OpenDocument.
A beta of the Open XML translator for Word 2007 will be hosted on SourceForge.net sometime today. The translator will convert .docx Word documents to .odf and vice versa. Not only that, it will be available under the BSD open source license. Vole says anyone can submit bugs and contribute to the project.
The final tool will ship at the end of 2006, with converters for Excel and PowerPoint around early next year.
It is not clear why Microsoft has changed its mind after spending a great deal of time and money fighting OpenDocument. It is possible that the outfit has been having to deal with lobby people from the various government organisations that want to adopt OpenDocument, but want to keep using Office.
More here. µ
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